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How to eliminate Worry:
“Worrying is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do, but it doesn’t get you anywhere.” Author Unknown
An interesting survey was done a few years ago on what the average person worries about.
The survey found that forty percent of what people worry about never happens.
And thirty percent of what people worry about had already happened so they were powerless to do anything about it.
Twelve percent of what the average person worries about is what others say about them, which most of the time is untrue. Consider the idea that other people’s opinions about you are none of your business.
Finally, according to this survey, ten percent of worry deals with your health and worrying will only make that worse!
That leaves about eight percent of the things that are considered to be real problems? and worry will not do these any good either!
In other words, we worry about a lot of things that are not going to happen or have already happened. That is a vast amount of misdirected emotional energy.
In the wonderful book “How to stop worrying and start living” by Dale Carnegie there is an excellent technique to handle worry. It’s called the ‘ Worry Buster’ and here’s how it works:
This technique has four simple steps.
1. Define in writing exactly what you are worried about.
In medicine there is a saying that accurate diagnosis is 50% of the cure. So write down exactly what you are worried about. For example “I am worried about my job.” Or “I am worried about a business client I have who is slow paying their invoice.”
2. Define in writing the Worst Possible Outcome (W.P.O.) of this worry.
If you have concerns about your job, the worst possible outcome is that you lose this job. If you have concerns about a business client being slow to pay their invoice the worst possible outcome is that you never get paid.
3. Decide mentally to accept the worst possible outcome should it occur.
This will mentally relieve a lot of stress. Ask yourself will this outcome kill me? Will losing your job kill you? Will not getting paid kill you? In vast majority of circumstances the answer is no. (Asking this simple question allows you to put your worry in perspective.)
4. Take action immediately to make sure the worst possible outcome doesn’t occur.
Action is the antidote for worry.
If you are worried about your job, talk to someone in your organisation who can give you more accurate information about your concerns. If you are worried about a client not paying you, perhaps you could make time to go and talk with them face to face and voice your concerns. Maybe you could offer them an instalment plan to pay their invoice if they are in financial difficulty.
John Paul Getty, who became one of the richest men in the world, used this strategy in every business situation he faced. He called it The Mini Max Regret Analysis. In other words how do I minimize the maximum regret? He would ask in every business dealing, “What is the worst possible outcome of this situation?” He would then work on minimizing this possibility.
Use the Worry Buster technique on any worry you have right now. It’s an excellent tool to eliminate worry quickly. And the more worries you eliminate the happier you will feel. We’ll have some more great ideas in our next edition of The Mental Toughness & Emotional Resilience Report.